Things I learned in Ghana

Churches in Ghana

Inspiration from Ghana

Last week I returned from a week long whirlwind trip to Africa. I had the opportunity to go to Ghana, Africa with a group called Meaningful Life International. A few months back the group approached me to speak at a conference for Pastors and Missionaries from across Africa. So on August 25th I left the comforts of America to journey to Ghana and joined Pastor Godwin Ahlijah where I spoke sixteen times over 7 days. I even had the chance to give a 30 minute message on a radio station that has over 5 million listeners. The trip was an exhausting, exciting privilege.

At the conference I was surrounded by courageous, intelligent men and women passionately serving Christ. They were eager to soak up any information I could give them. No matter the topic from leadership to time management, and from church growth to personal growth, they listened intently to everything I had to offer. It was humbling to have been given this opportunity, and I was reminded of how blessed I am to live where I do with such tremendous resources at my finger tips.

Also while in Ghana I had the opportunity to visit Cape Coast Castle, one of the Slave Castles along Ghana’s coast.  Ghana was a primary source used by the English to capture slaves. After trading for the slaves from the local chiefs the Europeans used the castles as a holding place before shipping them around the world.  As I went through the castle it was a somber awakening of how bad the African slave trade really was.  I encourage you to visit the website.  Being there reminded me of the scripture in Jeremiah 17:9 that says, “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?” Although we likely can’t see ourselves doing something as bad as torturing, raping, murdering, and enslaving another human being, we still do things or think things that are “desperately wicked.”  I encourage you to take a moment and examine your heart. I know I have these past few days.

Another interesting and unexpected thing that occurred while I was in Ghana was the potential expansion of Celera Group into Ghana. I shared with the leaders there that Celera was created to “raise the national average of church attendance” in America. They were very interested in the program and would like to start a network group in Ghana. (I guess now we will need to change the Celera creed to “raising the international average of church attendance!”) I believe that God is opening an amazing door for us to be a greater assistance to the pastors in Ghana, and to help them to grow personally and to reach their country for Christ.

One final thought… It was a big challenge to me how the Ghanaians wanted to grow and how so often we in America take the opportunity to grow for granted. They really challenged me and I want to challenge you to become even a stronger student of leadership.  Read, Listen, attend events…take every opportunity to grow.

Until next time,

Chris Sonksen


“As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.” Proverbs 27:17


About Chris Sonksen

Chris Sonksen is the founder and Lead Pastor of South Hills Church and has an exceptional ability to inspire both secular and non-secular audiences. Under his leadership, South Hills has experienced phenomenal growth and in just a few short years has grown from a handful of people to nearly 3000 in attendance today. Today South Hills has become a thriving, multi-service and multi-site church. Chris has a magnetic, captivating and humorous style for motivating and inspiring all audiences. As a motivational speaker, he has spoken both nationally and internationally in companies such as Verizon, Securitas and Home Depot, and there is no doubt that by applying his teachings, his audience will improve the quality of their lives! Chris is the author of two books In Search of Higher Ground and Handshake. Chris is the founder of Celera Church Strategy Group an organization with an unwavering commitment to excellence in all things, with the goal to “raise the national average of church attendance,” by equipping church leaders with resources and coaching. Chris brings high-energy focus and a passion for vision and leadership to encourage and equip the local Church. Chris is a native Californian, born in Long Beach and currently resides in Corona with his wife, Laura and their two children, Grace and Aidan.

Posted on September 8, 2010, in church growth, Connecting, Leadership, outreach, Personal Growth and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Great post Pastor Chris. What I learned, you hit on. The Ghanians passion to grow and be educated, not only in the things of God, but also a determination to grow themselves. I have been challenged and will respond.
    Pastor KJ

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